Variety spiced up life for top film producer

THERE is always a Eureka moment when it comes to someone’s passion or what turns out to be their life’s destiny.

For Julian Schlossberg, it was secretly reading the showbusiness bible Variety on the steps of his parents’ apartment.

His mother, Charlotte, had told him to stop taking the magazine into their home — so he continued to read it out of her sight.

And his eagerness to establish a career in entertainment came to fruition as he became a well-known stage and screen producer.

Julian recounts his life in his memoir, Try Not to Hold It Against Me: A Producer’s Life (Beaufort Books).

“I had a few projects on the go, but then the coronavirus pandemic shut everything down,” Julian told me from his home in Upstate New York.

“I’d tell stories at dinner parties and to friends, and they would say that I really ought to write a book. I was always too busy and wasn’t really interested.

“But I wrote a chapter and read it to my wife Merryn, who had heard the story from the chapter countless times, and she still laughed.

“I didn’t know where I was going with it, but I decided to tell more stories.”

The book — with a foreword by close friend, Academy and Tony awards winner Elaine May — his memoir tells the story of a boy from The Bronx who made it to Broadway and beyond.

Of Russian and German descent, Julian was closer to his father, Louis, than his mother growing up, which I joke is perhaps unusual for a Jewish boy.

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